VOTE OF NO CONFIDENCE IN WAVERLEY

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VOTE OF NO CONFIDENCE IN WAVERLEY BOROUGH COUNCIL’S LEADERSHIP

 On Thursday 25th May, Cranleigh Civic Society organised a meeting in the Village Hall to discuss the number of new houses where planning permission has already been granted and the further huge amount of housing being earmarked for Cranleigh in the draft Local Plan.
Village Hall 25May17
 
Subjects discussed included:
 
1. Waverley allocating a huge proportion (44%) of their borough-wide new housing target onto Cranleigh, knowing that there are few job opportunities locally.
2. Waverley holding secret meetings with developers.
3. A lack of concern and action by Waverley over the many infrastructure problems facing Cranleigh.
4. A lack of consultation by Waverley with Cranleigh residents and their Parish Council.
5. Waverley’s practice of recruiting substitutes to vote at JPC meetings (against Waverley’s own Constitution), and
6. Waverley’s inability to have produced a coherant Local Plan, having spent many unproductive years working on it.
 
Many residents expressed their deep concerns about the relentless growth of new housing in Cranleigh, particularly as Waverley Borough Council has simply not dealt with Cranleigh’s serious infrastructure problems first.
 

At the end of the meeting, local residents took a vote of “NO CONFIDENCE” in the Leadership of Waverley Borough Council.

The results of the vote were:

 
226 FOR
1 AGAINST
2 ABSTENTIONS
Here’s a link to a short video giving you a flavour of the meeting:

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Berkeley Homes Tree Objection

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It appears that Berkeley Homes are not content with the level of tree clearing they have already carried out for the access road to their site in Cranleigh, as they have now applied for the removal of a Tree Preservation Order, which protects the remaining ancient woodland.  We say it’s a shame they got permission to remove so many trees, and how dare they put the remaining beautiful trees at risk!

The TPO was specifically put in place by Waverley Borough Council to prevent further removal of trees, so what possible reason could there be to remove it?  Apparently it would be “a potential significant further barrier to delivery of the development”. Does that sound like they want to chop those trees down too?  According to BH the TPO is unnecessary as there are already “measures in place” to protect the remaining trees.

Berkeley Homes say they are “committed to delivery of the Cranleigh development….to the benefit of the stakeholders!” Well, we knew it wasn’t the existing residents of Cranleigh.

Interestingly the penultimate paragraph in their letter threatens bad working relationship with WBC, delays in building, and additional costs for WBC and Berkeley Homes!  Didn’t they notice the trees were there before?  Ancient woodland doesn’t just appear overnight!

See item 8 OBJECTION TO TREE PRESERVATION ORDER (NO. 01/2017) – TREES ON LAND BETWEEN ALFOLD ROAD AND KNOWLE LANE, CRANLEIGH, via this link: https://modgov.waverley.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=148&MId=1874&Ver=4

 

You can read the full details including the letter from Berkeley Homes and the response from Waverley Borough Council here:

Berkeley Homes Objection to tree preservation

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More Secret Meetings with Developers!

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Yet again, it would appear that Waverley Borough Council is holding secret meetings with developers planning even more housing estates in Cranleigh.

This time, they were caught out by Cranleigh Civic Society who learned that Waverley had rented space in a church in Godalming to hold the meeting so that even whistleblowers in the council would not know about it.  See the email chain below (the Monitoring Officer has to give honest replies to objective questions). However, we find it hard to believe Waverley’s statement that there was no suitable venue within the Council Offices.  They had from February to organise this!

Venue of secret meeting
Venue of secret meeting

Last time it came to light through good investigative journalism by The Surrey Advertiser that exposed the fact that Waverley was holding secret meetings, in a front page editorial on the 16th October 2015.

This is just one of several ways Waverley is trying to force new housing estates into Cranleigh without consulting Cranleigh residents, and without having to sort out our many infrastructure problems first.

Please come to the Village Meeting at 7pm on Thursday 25th May at Cranleigh Village Hall and learn about the various ways Waverley Borough Council is unfairly treating Cranleigh residents in their rush to get housing built in Cranleigh.  And, more importantly, what you as residents can do about it.  Oh, and please tell all your friends and neighbours!

The article published in the Surrey Advertiser in 2015 is attached here:

Surrey Advertiser 16-Oct-15

Attached below is the leaflet we have been distributing around the village:

Leaflet 25May17

 Email trail:

———- Forwarded message ———- From: MonitoringOfficer <MonitoringOfficer@waverley.gov.uk> Date: Mon, May 8, 2017 at 2:02 PM Subject: RE: Secret meeting this week

To: Adrian Clarke , MonitoringOfficer <MonitoringOfficer@waverley.gov.uk>

Dear Mr Clarke

Thank you for your email and I can confirm that a meeting is taking place this afternoon between developers, utility companies and Waverley Borough Council.  This is not a secret meeting, but a meeting to which members of the public are not able to attend.  The reason for the meeting taking place at the Baptist Church in Godalming today is because there was no suitable venue available at the Council Offices in the Burys.

The first meeting of the Group took place in February, the minutes of which have been available to view on the Waverley website.  Here is a link to the page on the website where the minutes of today’s meeting will also be posted in due course.

Kind regards, Emma

[Incidentally, Robin Pellow is no longer employed at Waverley Borough Council and the  Monitoring Officer is now Robin Taylor.  He can be contacted via the monitoringofficer@waverley.gov.uk email address.]

 

Emma McQuillan

Democratic Services Manager and Deputy Monitoring Officer

Policy and Governance

www.waverley.gov.uk/committees

Direct Line: 01483 523351

………………………………………….

From: Adrian Clarke

Sent: Monday 08 May 2017 09:48

To: MonitoringOfficer

Subject: Secret meeting this week

Dear Mr Pellow,

We learned at a meeting with a utility company last week that Executive members of Waverley Borough Council have arranged a secret meeting this week with developers and utility companies to discuss Waverley’s plans for dumping new housing estates in Cranleigh.

We were were told that the venue is the Baptist Church in Godalming, a venue chosen well away from the council offices at The Burys so that the meeting can be held in secret.

Please would you confirm if this meeting is, or is not going ahead, and if it is, if the public are invited to the meeting to scrutinise Executive members’ actions.

We enclose a copy of an editorial in the Surrey Advertiser dated 16-Oct-15, exposing this dubious practice in the past.  We had hoped that Waverley’s Executive members had in the meantime adopted a more open, honest approach to your meetings.

Kind regards,

Adrian

Adrian Clarke

Cranleigh Civic Society

“Speaking up for Cranleigh”

email: info@cranleighsociety.org

Website: www.cranleighsociety.org

Facebook: www.facebook.com/cranleighsociety

Twitter: @CranleighSoc

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Concerns over plans for New Junior School in Cranleigh

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Surrey County Council have submitted a planning application (ref SCC2017/0064 & WBC: WA/2017/0696) for a new Junior and Infant School at Glebelands in Cranleigh, and this was discussed at the Cranleigh Parish Council Planning meeting on 24 April 2017.

Having reviewed the application we at Cranleigh Civic Society have concerns regarding child safety.

It appears that with the new school building, the impact of having 3 schools in close proximity in the Glebelands area, and the dangers of hugely increased population of school children travelling to and from school, have not been addressed.

The current Church of England Infant School in Church Lane, has parking available that allows parents to park and walk their Infant school children to the safety of the Infant School premises.

There is no parking provision for parents in the proposed new infant School at Glebelands that will allow parents to ensure their children’s safe arrival at School.

As well as no parking provision for the younger children’s parents/guardians, there is also no extra drop-off area provision for the increased number of High School children.

The impact of the Dunsfold and Cranleigh development proposals could double the current numbers of children of Infant and High School age travelling to and from Glebelands School.

The lack of safety provision in the proposed application will put the new and existing school attendees at unacceptably high risk in many ways in the future while travelling to, from and arriving at school.

We believe that Surrey County Council & Waverley Borough Council both have a duty to properly address this serious issue to ensure child safety and we would be interested to hear how they will carry out their duty of care in ensuring the safe arrival and departure of the huge numbers of children that will attend the Schools at Glebelands in the future.

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